NASHVILLE, Tenn.—A graphic designer who also practices martial arts came with his martial arts teacher and martial artist friends to see Shen Yun Performing Arts Touring Company at the Tennessee Performing Arts Center on Feb. 25. Michael Dement said, “This is the first time I have ever seen Chinese dance and it amazes me.”
He said the only tickets still available were for the balcony area, but he was pleased because being up high allowed him to see the patterns the dancers formed. “I saw all of the symmetry and all of the choreography … and how the movements transit together as a whole on the stage.”
He loved the experience. “It was incredible.”
Because the friends practice traditional martial arts, which were born from classical Chinese dance, Mr. Dement felt he saw much that was familiar, he said. “We all practice martial arts, we practice Wushu style taichi. Saw a lot of the elements, you know, it is amazing to see it on stage.
“It is the first time I have ever seen it, and it is amazing. I am happy for seeing it. I could definitely come back and see another show.”
The 2012 show includes Martial Arts Training Ground, in which young men train for war. According to the program, “their movements flow like water but are as solid as rock.”
He praised the technique of the artists. “It takes a lot of skill and a lot of balance and stamina to do what they did.”
As a visual artist, he enjoyed the shapes the choreography created. “I could see the symmetry of the show, how they would lay out their movements, the pattern that they created from the dancers themselves. That is a big aspect of it.”
Reporting by Maggie Xie and Mary Silver.
Shen Yun Performing Arts, based in New York, tours the world on a mission to revive traditional Chinese culture. Shen Yun Performing Arts Touring Company will be in Nashville’s TPAC for one more performance on Feb. 26, and then Little Rock on Feb. 27 and 28 at the Robinson Center Music Hall.
For more information, visit ShenYunPerformingArts.org.